Online gambling in Arkansas
Since spring 2022, online gambling is available in Arkansas. Prior to this, the only online options available to residents were offshore gambling sites, which are not technically legal since the 2019 legislation changes.
With the legalization of online gambling in the state, there is now a safe and regulated way for residents to get some skin in the game from the comfort of their own homes. A relatively small selection of online gambling sites is currently available in Arkansas. More sites are looking to move into the space as and when they can gain state approval.
Best online gambling sites in Arkansas
There is a small but growing number of online gambling sites legally providing sports betting in Arkansas. Each of the physical gambling sites has its own online arm and there are now also other providers gaining their licenses and beginning to offer services.
How to sign up for an online gambling site in Arkansas
While the laws are strict, the process for gambling online in Arkansas is very similar to that in other states. To ensure you stay safe and have the best possible experience, you should follow these simple steps to get started:
Forms of online gambling not allowed in AR
As mentioned, while sports betting apps in Arkansas are legal, certain games are still restricted or totally prohibited in the state. For this reason, it is highly recommended to only use a reputable and licensed gambling site in AR.
This ensures that you remain on the right side of the law, as they only provide access to those games and sports which are legal in the state. Two forms of gambling that are not currently allowed online in the state of Arkansas are:
Is Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) legal in Arkansas?
Yes, Daily Fantasy Sports, or DFS, is legal in Arkansas. DFS is an accelerated form of more traditional fantasy sports, played over short time periods such as a day or week, and Arkansas legalized it following a change of legislation in 2017.
At the time, this put Arkansas among just nine states across the country to allow these paid contests. This is somewhat surprising, given the state’s strict laws on other forms of gambling. It gets around these rules as Arkansas state law does not regard it as gambling per se. The rules are less clear in other states, but in AR, licensed online DFS sites are legally allowed to operate throughout the state.
Where can you gamble in person in AR?
Before online gambling in Arkansas was finally allowed to begin in 2022, it was only permitted on licensed physical premises. Although this has now changed, physical casinos and racetracks remain highly popular among people wishing to go and experience the unique atmosphere of in-person games and gambling for themselves.
While the three licensed facilities offer many of the same basic games and sports, they each have a slightly different offering and feel.
Is it safe to use offshore gambling sites in AR?
No, it is not safe to use offshore gambling sites in Arkansas. Up until very recently, online gambling in Arkansas was completely prohibited. Even now, there are many rules and restrictions and, as a result, it can seem tempting to use offshore sites. Their promise of competitive odds and a greater variety of sports and wagers can look promising, but it is not all that it seems.
You run the risk of falling foul of regulatory and licensing issues as the state has not condoned these sites. Additionally, while you are protected on many legal levels when using officially state-licensed and approved casinos and websites, that is not the case for offshore gambling sites.
Should the operator shut down or run into difficulties, you are exposing yourself to a significantly higher risk of losing everything. Using offshore gambling sites in Arkansas can also expose you to funding restrictions on your account. The state frowns upon residents using sites outside their jurisdiction. As a result, you could find your normal funding methods blocked if you try to circumvent the rules.
State licensing also protect you from rogue operators as you know everything is legal and above board. If something goes wrong, you can expect legal support that you won’t find when using offshore sites. Far too many people find out too late that offshore gambling sites do not offer the support of fully licensed and legal sites. The victims have a problem, go to make a complaint, but then find out that these sites don’t provide assistance or sometimes do not even reply. They also then learn the hard way that the state and federal laws no longer protect them.
The timeline of gambling in Arkansas
Gambling in Arkansas has evolved through some significant changes of substance and image over the past 150 or more years. From being a legal and highly popular activity, it was later banned completely.
Following that ruling, it gained infamy as an underground activity as people found their way around the rules. More recently, gambling has slowly picked up again under strict regulations and laws as the state has relaxed or removed the previous bans.